Wikimedia blog

News from the Wikimedia Foundation and about the Wikimedia movement

Highlights

Major news and information from the Wikimedia Foundation (RSS feed).

Wikimedia Foundation Report, July 2013

Information You are more than welcome to edit the wiki version of this report for the purposes of usefulness, presentation, etc., and to add translations of the “Highlights” excerpts.

Data and Trends

Global unique visitors for June:

500 million (-4.25% compared with May; +6.37% compared with the previous year)
(comScore data for all Wikimedia Foundation projects; comScore will release July data later in August)

Page requests for July:

21.2 billion (+0.4% compared with June; +19.8% compared with the previous year)
(Server log data, all Wikimedia Foundation content projects including mobile access, but excluding Wikidata and the Wikipedia main portal page.)

Active Registered Editors for June 2013 (>= 5 mainspace edits/month, excluding bots):

data currently under review
(Database data, all Wikimedia Foundation projects.)

Report Card (integrating various statistical data and trends about WMF projects):

http://reportcard.wmflabs.org/

(Definitions)

Financials

Wikimedia Foundation YTD Revenue and Expenses vs Plan as of June 30, 2013

Wikimedia Foundation YTD Expenses by Functions as of June 30, 2013

(Financial information is only available through June 2013 at the time of this report.)

All financial information presented is for the Month-To-Date and Year-To-Date June 30, 2013.

Revenue $51,040,795
Expenses:
Engineering Group $15,224,438
Fundraiser Group $3,463,128
Grantmaking & Programs Group $8,830,248
Governance Group $742,435
Legal/Community Advocacy/Communications Group $3,090,563
Finance/HR/Admin Group $5,865,595
Total Expenses $37,216,407
Total surplus $13,824,388
  • Revenue for the month of June is $0.48MM versus plan of $0.28MM, approximately $205K or 74% over plan.
  • Year-to-date revenue is $51.04MM versus plan of $46.07MM, approximately $4.97MM or 11% over plan.
  • Expenses for the month of June is $3.39MM versus plan of $3.99MM, approximately $598K or 15% under plan, primarily due to lower personnel expenses, internet hosting, and grant expenses (FDC grants) partially offset by higher capital expenses, outside contract services, legal fees, and travel expenses.
  • Year-to-date expenses is $37.22MM versus plan of $42.07MM, approximately $4.85MM or 12% under plan, primarily due to lower personnel expenses, internet hosting, grant expenses (FDC grants), and travel expenses partially offset by higher capital expenses, legal expenses, bank fees, outside contract services, and personal property tax expenses.
  • Cash position is $39.75MM as of June 30, 2013.

Highlights

The new mobile editing interface

Mobile editing

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Listen to Wikipedia

Screen shot from Listen to Wikipedia website

Listen to Wikipedia is a visual and audio illustration of live editing activity on Wikipedia. Tune your headphones or speakers accordingly and enjoy the sound of people writing the free online encyclopedia.

Listen to Wikipedia creates sounds and circles based on a real-time feed of contributions to Wikipedia articles. The pitch of the note corresponds to the size of the edit — a bigger change makes a deeper note and a larger circle. A bell indicates when content is added to the encyclopedia and a string sound indicates when content is removed. Edits by unregistered contributors are marked with green circles and edits by automated bots are marked with purple circles. Occasionally, you may hear a chord welcoming the newest user who registers and joins the project.

Go ahead, make some noise by editing Wikipedia!

This project is a follow up to the Recent Changes Map visualization, which displays edits by unregistered users around the world. Both the Recent Changes Map and Listen to Wikipedia are based on Wikipedia’s live public data feed. Source code and additional information about this project are available on github. Listen to Wikipedia was inspired by and partially based on Listen to Bitcoin by Maximillian Laumeister.

Stephen LaPorte and Mahmoud Hashemi

Researching collaboration for a better world: John T. Riedl (1962 – 2013)

Does it matter that women are mostly not editing the most important information resource in our world? Does it matter that one of the most important artifacts in human history tends to be written mostly by males? […] That seems to me really important, and the question for this community, for people with our skills, is: what can we do about it? We know how to redesign socio-technical communities so that they work differently: what would be a Wikipedia that was more welcoming, that worked better for women?

John Riedl, Community, Cooperation, and Conflict in Wikipedia, talk at UC Irvine, March 2, 2012

John Riedl in 2010

Last year, at a lecture given at UC Irvine, computer scientist John Riedl urged students and researchers not to remain passive scholars of online collaboration, but to “design tools to directly change how the world works”. At the time when he gave this advice, John was already years into a long fight with cancer. He died this past Monday, leaving among his legacy one of the most important bodies of research on Wikipedia, and inspiring a generation of computer and social scientists to think of software design as a way to build better social systems.

With his students and collaborators at GroupLens Research – the group that he co-founded at the University of Minnesota in the 1990s – John made enormous contributions to our understanding of Wikipedia, studying among other things:

  • How to recommend relevant work to Wikipedia editors (a project which resulted in the development of SuggestBot, a tool still widely used by our community, Cosley et al. 2007)
  • The survival of individual contributions and the exposure of temporarily vandalized articles to readers (Priedhorsky et al. 2007)
  • How article creation and article deletion have evolved over the years as a result of Wikipedia’s growth in topic coverage and policies (Lam and Riedl 2009)
  • How Wikiprojects function, and how the diversity of their membership affects group productivity and member retention (Chen et al. 2010)
  • The impact of quality control mechanisms (such as reverts) on new contributors, the quality of their work and their survival (Halfaker et al. 2011)
  • Wikipedia’s gender gap, providing the first quantitative evidence of its impact on Wikipedia’s content, in a paper that received the “Best Full Paper” award at the WikiSym 2011 conference. Just last week, it was prominently cited in a strategy presentation here at the Wikimedia Foundation, by deputy director Erik Möller. (Lam et al. 2011)

John believed in Wikipedia research as a way to improve the quality and sustainability of our projects. And as a member of the Wikimedia Research Committee he also actively participated in discussions to develop policies and incentives to promote research of relevance to our volunteer communities.

He was an contributor to the English Wikipedia himself, with over 100 edits since signing up in 2005. In one of his last Wikipedia edits, John added well-cited information about promising new therapies to the article about Melanoma, the form of cancer from which he was suffering. One of his former students recalls that “he’s fought it as hard as he could, with as much knowledge as he could seek.” As with his own research, he shared this knowledge with others.

We wish to remember John for his relentless intellectual curiosity and extraordinary kindness and humanity, which made him an invaluable collaborator, mentor and friend. We owe to John much of what we know about our projects and we are immensely grateful to him for laying the groundwork for so many of us at the Wikimedia Foundation.

Dario Taraborelli
Senior Research Analyst

Wikimedia Highlights, June 2013

Information For versions in other languages, please check the wiki version of this report, or add your own translation there!

Highlights from the Wikimedia Foundation Report and the Wikimedia engineering report for June 2013, with a selection of other important events from the Wikimedia movement

Wikimedia Foundation highlights

First workshop on how to evaluate the success of organized Wikimedia activites

On June 22–23, the first workshop on the design and evaluation of programs (organized activities) in the Wikimedia movement took place. The event was held Budapest, Hungary by the Wikimedia Foundation, in partnership with Wikimedia Magyarország, the local chapter. The workshop brought together 21 program leaders from 15 countries to learn the basic concepts of program evaluation. The success of the workshop itself was evaluated, too: Surveys before and after the workshop showed that a majority of the participants left with a better understanding of these terms and concepts.

One of the tasks made easier by VisualEditor: References can now be edited and added in a format that is more convenient than the <ref> tags in the middle of the page’s source wikitext.

Preparations for the launch of VisualEditor and Universal Language Selector

In June, work was completed on major new features for VisualEditor (the visual interface to edit wiki pages without markup), in preparation for its launch for all logged-in editors on the English Wikipedia on July 1. It is becoming available to most other Wikipedians during the rest of July.

Also in June, the Universal Language Selector began to be deployed to all Wikimedia projects. It allows users to configure language settings like interface language, fonts, and input methods (keyboard mappings) in a flexible way. By July 1, it was available on more than 150 wikis.

Universal Language Selector: A logged-in user is choosing the language which they prefer for the interface menus on the English Wikipedia

Community input invited for privacy policy update

In preparation for an update of the Wikimedia Foundation’s privacy policy (the first since 2008), the Legal and Community Advocacy (LCA) team has invited participation in a community discussion period, lasting until July 18. The goal was to get initial input about what privacy concerns community members have, what they find important, and what they would like to see in the next version of the privacy policy. The community was also asked to provide input on practices regarding the Wikimedia trademarks.

Global unique visitors for May:

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Wikimedia Foundation Report, June 2013

Information You are more than welcome to edit the wiki version of this report for the purposes of usefulness, presentation, etc., and to add translations of the “Highlights” excerpts.

Global unique visitors for May:

522 million (+0.97% compared with April; +5.97% compared with the previous year)
(comScore data for all Wikimedia Foundation projects; comScore will release June data later in July)

Page requests for June:

21.1 billion (+0.7% compared with May; +17.1% compared with the previous year)
(Server log data, all Wikimedia Foundation projects including mobile access)

Active Registered Editors for May 2013 (>= 5 mainspace edits/month, excluding bots):

80,611 (-0.19% compared with April / -1.92% compared with the previous year)
(Database data, all Wikimedia Foundation projects.)

Report Card (integrating various statistical data and trends about WMF projects):

http://reportcard.wmflabs.org/

(Definitions)

Financials

Wikimedia Foundation YTD Revenue and Expenses vs Plan as of May 31, 2013

Wikimedia Foundation YTD Expenses by Functions as of May 31, 2013

(Financial information is only available through May 2013 at the time of this report.)

All financial information presented is for the Month-To-Date and Year-To-Date May 31, 2013.

Revenue $50,559,430
Expenses:
Engineering Group $13,523,471
Fundraiser Group $3,265,731
Grantmaking & Programs Group $8,284,686
Governance Group $692,321
Legal/Community Advocacy/Communications Group $2,777,192
Finance/HR/Admin Group $5,272,075
Total Expenses $33,815,476
Total surplus $16,743,954
  • Revenue for the month of May is $0.12MM versus plan of $0.28MM, approximately $159K or 57% under plan.
  • Year-to-date revenue is $50.56MM versus plan of $45.79MM, approximately $4.77MM or 10% over plan.
  • Expenses for the month of May is $2.97MM versus plan of $4.01MM, approximately $1.04MM or 26% under plan, primarily due to lower personnel expenses, internet hosting, and grant expenses (FDC grants) partially offset by higher capital expenses, outside contract services, and travel expenses.
  • Year-to-date expenses is $33.82MM versus plan of $38.08MM, approximately $4.26MM or 11% under plan, primarily due to lower personnel expenses, internet hosting, grant expenses (FDC grants), and travel expenses partially offset by higher legal expenses, bank fees, outside contract services, and personal property tax expenses.
  • Cash position is $42.7MM as of May 31, 2013.

Highlights

First workshop on how to evaluate the success of organized Wikimedia activites

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A successful “Collection Days” edit-a-thon in Warsaw, Poland

This post is available in 3 languages: Svenska 7% • Polski 100%English 7%

English

en:Sarmīte Ēlerte from Latvia was one of the VIPs present at the Collection Days’ kick-off event.

Six hardworking Wikip/medians.

Finding great images to illustrate articles were a central part of the event.

It has already been a couple of weeks, but I wanted to explain and share some lessons learned about an edit-a-thon that Wikimedia Sverige and Wikimedia Polska organized in conjunction with the Europeana 1989 Collection Days in Warsaw, Poland.

The Collection Days are a series of events continuing through the end of 2014, where the public is invited to come and share their memorabilia of 1989, and have it digitized and uploaded online under a CC-BY-SA license. When I heard about this topic, I thought that the first Collection Days would be a perfect event for the Wikimedia movement to participate in because of the similarities of involving the general public and the use of the license. The idea was that we could try out the concept and see what worked and didn’t work, and by sharing this experience and gaining these contacts, we could help other European chapters in the Wikimedia movement to organize events in connection to future Collection Days.

With this blog post, I hope to do just that.

The goal with the edit-a-thon, in addition to writing articles together and making Wikipedia better, was to get new people and new organizations involved in the work of the Wikimedia movement. The idea is that the people who bring their objects to the Collection Days easily could stop by and learn how to edit Wikipedia and learn that their memorabilia of 1989 also might appear on Wikipedia.

The day before, I arrived with another Swedish volunteer to attend the kick-off event (with a bunch of VIPs present, who now have images on Commons!). We met with the Polish Collection Days’ organizers, prepared the venue and uploaded images that had been digitized during the day. The Polish chapter had been great at promoting the event in advance and had translated the event page to Polish.

On 9 June, six experienced Wikimedians from Poland and Sweden gathered in Warsaw for this international edit-a-thon to write about both Polish history in general and especially about the events that took place in 1989. Our goal was to use as many images that were digitized during the Collection Days as possible. I gave a short presentation about what we hoped to achieve there and then we started with fixing up some of the images uploaded the night before and writing articles (a few more images were uploaded from the event throughout the day that we worked on). The catering had some issues, but we had a great time and we were very productive, with nine new articles and 15 articles expanded on the Polish, Swedish and English Wikipedias.

We hope that other chapters will take the opportunity to organize edit-a-thons in their countries in connection with these events. After Poland, the Collection Days will be organized in the Baltic states (the plan is August, but the exact dates are still to be decided). So Wikimedia Eesti and all you volunteers in Latvia and Lithuania, be sure to contact me and I’ll help you to get in contact with the right people!

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Wikipedians go to Open Help Conference

Ocaasi, Valeriej, and the wub sprinting at Open Help Conference 2013

What do thoughtful, well-designed, engaging community help systems look like for Wikipedia? What do our help systems have in common with other open source projects, and how do they differ?

In June the Wikimedia Foundation sent a team of four Wikimedians to the Open Help Conference in Cincinnati, Ohio to find out. Ocaasi, the wub, Valeriej, and Seeeko spent a week speaking and listening to helpers from open source projects like Mozilla, Ubuntu, GNOME, WordPress, Drupal and RedHat.

Over two days of talks and three days of work sprints, attendees explored and improved a wide set of systems for helping contributors and growing communities of users and helpers. The WordPress team embarked on a large project to decouple their help pages for developers from their help pages for users. Jorge Castro of Ubuntu considered the ways that different kinds of communication tools support different kinds of conversations online: forums facilitating water-cooler discussion, Q&A boards that promote sharing answers efficiently, mailing lists with their ongoing arguments about top-vs-bottom posting. The Gnome crew grappled with the decision of whether improving an ever-growing number of existing pages was better than just starting fresh with new pages. Mozilla’s Janet Swisher shared how she gathers contributors together in “doc sprints” (edit-a-thons for documentation) to collaboratively write help documentation and build community connections. Michael Verdi spoke about Mozilla’s “Army of Awesome,” which helps hundreds of Firefox users per day on Twitter.

Team Wikimedia was excited to learn about the challenges that these other open source projects also face. As Wikipedians, we have coordinated edit-a-thons, organized help documentation to better support different types of users, set up a Q&A forum with wikimarkup, and answered many OTRS emails; we also appreciate the work that goes into well-orchestrated help systems. The results of these explorations at Open Help for Wikimedia projects include the development of a few new documents to support the thoughtful design and growth of Wikipedia and MediaWiki’s help systems.

The wub and Ocaasi focused on the Help Project, the WikiProject that creates and organizes thousands of help pages on English Wikipedia. Starting with a talk titled “Wikipedia:Too much documentation,” the wub addressed Wikipedia’s ballooning number of help pages and the lack of consistency between them. As a 2012 Wikimedia Community Fellow, the wub had already spent time redesigning the most-used pages in the help system, but his learnings from that effort had not yet been distilled into a clear statement of design principles to help guide future volunteers.

During the Open Help sprint days, the team updated the Help Project’s pages to better engage helpers. Ocaasi and the wub crafted a best practices guideline for improving Wikipedia’s help pages. In clear and simple language, the guidelines set goals like “focus on users and use case,” “keep pages simple,” and “make navigation clear and apparent.” The wub also developed quality and importance scales and templates for assessing help pages mapped to the guidelines. In the coming weeks, the Help Project will start a regular collaboration drive to increase participation, beginning with assessing all help pages according to the criteria developed in the sprints.

Another area the team focused on was the Teahouse, Wikipedia’s many-to-many support space for new editors. In their talk, “Can Help Be Fun? Wikipedia Experiments with social help,” Seeeko and Ocaasi introduced a collection of techniques for creating supportive spaces that build community in playful ways. They emphasized playful design, surfacing people, the power of invitation, a welcoming tone, social mobility, and acknowledgement as important elements for a “Fun is serious business” approach that has worked well for the Teahouse. They also noted that this approach has influenced the Grants:IdeaLab and an upcoming grant-funded game The Wikipedia Adventure.

Seeeko and Ocaasi applied many of these principles to a new Teahouse document that sets out design guidelines for contributors aiming to make improvements to the Teahouse. The guidelines distill goals and practices that have made the Teahouse successful from the start, like “build for new editors” and “show recent activity,” and encourage volunteers to make data-driven decisions to grow the project and keep with its spirit. Valeriej and Seeko also paired up to improve the workflow for requesting and creating new features in the Teahouse. Playing with the theme of a wishing well that users might find in the Teahouse garden, they defined attributes and workflows for “wishing” and “granting wishes” (requesting and developing features), they created a build plan, and they worked on a module to make identifying key information easier. The Teahouse’s new Wishing Well is the initial result of that work.

Valeriej also devoted time to considering improvements to help contributors who are new to MediaWiki. Focusing on a Starter Kit, she decided to begin with a survey of MediaWiki contributors to determine the effectiveness of the project’s current help documentation. She plans to use the results of the survey to refine and focus the documents used to orient new contributors to MediaWiki over the coming months.

The team was inspired by learning from other open source communities and it hopes that gathering together to improve the design of our own community’s help systems will encourage more efforts like it. Travel for three of the team members was funded by the Participation Support Program. Wikimedians looking to share wiki-learning by participating at conferences or other convenings like this one are encouraged to apply.

(Many thanks to WordPress attendee Siobhan McKeown for blogging her amazing notes from the talks!)

Siko Bouterse, Seeeko, Wikimedia Foundation
Jake Orlowitz, Ocaasi, Wikipedia editor

Canadian Copyright Collection from the British Library on Wikimedia Commons

This post is available in 2 languages:
Français 7% • English 100%

English

The dancing pavilion at the Boblo Island Amusement Park, Ontario (1914). Financed by Henry Ford, this was the world’s second largest dance hall at the time, holding up to 5,000 dancers. The music was provided by one of the world’s largest orchestrions (pictured on the right): a 16 foot tall, 14 foot wide, self-playing orchestra with 419 pipes and percussion section.

July 1st is Canada Day, and Wikimedia UK and the British Library are today announcing the release of 2,000 historic photographs of Canada.

Since September 2012, we’ve been working to digitise a collection of historic Canadian photographs and release them onto Wikimedia Commons and into the public domain. The collection itself was acquired between 1895 and 1924 and consists of photographs supplied to support copyright deposits by Canadian photographers between those years. This came about through an arcane piece of colonial law, known snappily as the Colonial Copyright Law, which sought to extend British copyright protection across the empire, while also ensuring the collection of published material from these same areas. In practice, the law was a failure; only a few territories ratified it and even fewer actually deposited materials. Until 1925, however, Canada did implement the law and the Ministry of Agriculture effectively administrated the collection of copyright deposits. A copy of every item was sent to Ottawa and to London, where it was archived by the British Museum and then neglected for decades.

Materials collected from Canada included printed books, sheet music, maps and, of course, photographs. While the photographs were seen as trivial and undervalued at the time, what can now be perceived through the collection is a broad and human view of Canada at a crucial point in its history; a thirty year period when the Confederation developed politically, economically and socially, while garnering an international reputation. The collection itself provides views on this changing nation, from Vancouver to Halifax, with many unknown camera workers alongside well-known figures such as Frank Micklethwaite or William Notman.

All of this combines to create a strange mix of photographic subjects. Photographs of soldiers leaving for World War I are filed alongside images of cute kittens and men wrestling bears; trains are depicted steaming across the nation while boats continue to ply the water-ways; major cities are shown rapidly growing, while new settlements make their first marks in the dirt; and Eastern European immigrants rub shoulders with the First Nations.

Since today (Monday) marks the 146th anniversary of Canada’s Confederation, it seemed an appropriate time to note the upload of the collection to Wikimedia Commons. There are currently just over 2,000 photographs uploaded, each with a duplicate full-resolution TIFF copy, with more to come in the following weeks. All the images are in the public domain, and are freely available for use and reuse – please, enjoy!

You can see more details on the collection on Wikimedia Commons.

Philip Hatfield (Curator, Canadian Collections, British Library) and Andrew Gray (former Wikipedian in Residence, British Library) Funding for the project was given by Wikimedia UK and by the British Library Eccles Centre for American Studies.

  • Aeroplane Picture of 1000 Islands No 1500 (HS85-10-38114).jpg
  • The Honourable Sir Wilfrid Laurier Photo A (HS85-10-16871).jpg
  • The farewell (HS85-10-30885).jpg
  • Cree Indian (HS85-10-13885) edit.jpg

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Wikimedia Research Newsletter, June 2013

Wikimedia Research Newsletter
Wikimedia Research Newsletter Logo.png


Vol: 3 • Issue: 6 • June 2013 [contribute] [archives] Syndicate the Wikimedia Research Newsletter feed

Most controversial Wikipedia topics, automatic detection of sockpuppets

With contributions by: Giovanni Luca Ciampaglia, Taha Yasseri and Tilman Bayer.

Contents

“The most controversial topics in Wikipedia: a multilingual and geographical analysis”

Map of Conflict in Spanish Wikipedia. Each dot represents a geolocated article. Size and colour of dots are corresponding to the controversy measure according to Sumi et al. (2001)[1]. The map is taken from Yasseri, et al. (2013) [2].

A comparative work by T. Yasseri., A. Spoerri, M. Graham and J. Kertész on controversial topics in different language versions of Wikipedia has recently been posted on the Social Science Research Network (SSRN) online scholarly archive [1]. The paper, which will appear as a chapter of an upcoming book titled “Global Wikipedia: International and cross-cultural issues in online collaboration”, to be published by Scarecrow Press in 2014, and edited by Fichman P., and Hara N., looks at the 100 most controversial topics in 10 language versions of Wikipedia (results including 3 additional languages are reported in the blog of one of the authors), and tries to make sense of the similarities and differences in these lists. Several visualization methods are proposed, based on a flash-based tool developed by the authors, called CrystalView. Controversiality is measured using a scalar metric which takes into account the total volume of pairwise mutual reverts among all contributors to a page. This metric was proposed by Sumi et al. (2011)[2], in a paper reviewed two years ago in this newsletter (“Edit wars and conflict metrics“). Topics related to politics, geographical locations, and religion are reported to be the most controversial across the board, and each language seems to feature specific, local controversies, which the authors further track down by grouping together languages with similar spheres of influences. Furthermore, the presence of latitude/longitude information (geocoordinates) in several of the Wikipedia articles in the sample analyzed in the study let the authors map the top controversial topics to a global world map, showing how each language features both local and global issues as the most heated topics of debate.

In summary, the study shows how valuable information about cross-cultural differences can be extracted from traces of Internet activity, though one obvious question is how the demographics of Wikipedia editors affect the representativeness of the results, an issue which the authors seem to be aware of, and which is probably going to play a role of increasing importance, as the field of cultural studies looks more and more at data generated by peer production communities.

The research has been intensely featured in the media, e.g., Huffington Post, Live Science, Wired.com, Zeit Online.

Non-virtual sockpuppets created by participants of RecentChangesCamp, as a humorous take on the sockpuppet phenomenon in online communities

Sockpuppet evidence from automated writing style analysis

“A Case Study of Sockpuppet Detection in Wikipedia”[3], presented at a “Workshop on Language in Social Media” this month, describes an automated method to analyze the writing style of users for the purpose of detecting or confirming sockpuppets. The abuse of multiple accounts (also known as “multi-aliasing” or sybil attacks in other contexts) is described as “a prevalent problem in Wikipedia, there were close to 2,700 unique suspected cases reported in 2012.”

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Wikimedia Highlights, May 2013

Information For versions in other languages, please check the wiki version of this report, or add your own translation there!

Highlights from the Wikimedia Foundation Report and the Wikimedia engineering report for May 2013, with a selection of other important events from the Wikimedia movement

Wikimedia Foundation highlights

From the Fundraising report: The “facts” banner (listing some basic facts about Wikipedia) was tested in many different versions and eventually performed better than all previous fundraising banners

Fundraising report released

The Wikimedia Foundation’s fundraising team published a report from the 2012-2013 fundraiser. The report reviews the evolution of banner design and includes data about the 2012 year-end English campaign and the 2013 multilingual campaign, which raised a total $35 million USD from over 2 million donors.

Community invited to discuss trademark practices

The Legal and Community Advocacy (LCA) team published a statement on trademark practices, which requests community feedback on the Wikimedia trademark policy, procedure, and other questions. The objective is to balance the interest in licensing the brand for mission-aligned activities, with the necessity of preventing misuse and “naked licensing” (licensing without quality control). This is the opportunity to provide ideas as the team considers updating the trademark policy and practices.

Wikipedia Zero launches in Pakistan

Wikipedia Zero, the program to give people around the world mobile access to Wikipedia free of data charges, is now available in Pakistan, in partnership with Mobilink (Vimpelcom). The company’s user base of over 32 million people makes this the second largest Wikipedia Zero launch to date.

The “Nearby” feature in Vatican City. The camera icon (bottom) indicates an article which misses images, inviting users to contribute one.

“Nearby” feature shows Wikipedia articles in the reader’s vicinity

On location-aware devices (such as smartphones with GPS), a new “Nearby” page lists articles close to the reader’s current location. The feature is designed for mobile devices, but also works on the desktop version of Wikipedia.

Presentation slides with the Tool Labs logo

New hosting environment for community-developed tools

The Tool Labs, an environment for community developers to provide external software tools supporting work on Wikimedia projects, is now operating. With the support of the German Wikimedia chapter, many existing tools have already migrated from the Wikimedia Toolserver to Tools Labs.

Search for new Executive Director begins

The job opening for the Wikimedia Foundation’s new Executive Director has been posted. This starts the search for a successor for Sue Gardner, who will step down later this year. Board of Trustees chair Kat Walsh asked Wikimedians for help in finding the best possible candidate, by spreading the news in their networks.

Global unique visitors for April:

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